After sweeping the Angels and riding the win train on Friday night against Oakland, Seattle proceeded to lose the next two games against the Athletics at the Coliseum. With the Mariners losing on Saturday and Sunday (and Tampa Bay winning the past two games) there is now a three-way tie for the American League Wild Card. Seattle really needs to not play down to their opponent’s level going forward, especially when they welcome in the Washington Nationals (worst record in MLB) for two games beginning Tuesday night at T-Mobile Park. Here is a recap of all three games against Oakland:
Friday night was a Seattle offensive explosion, thanks in part to Eugenio Suarez, who had two home runs and five RBIs. Ty France also checked in with two hits and two RBIs of his own. Marco Gonzales was able to go 5 1/3 innings giving up two earned runs. Those were the only two runs that Oakland was able to produce in the game, where the Mariners won the opener by a score of 10-2.
Logan Gilbert was Seattle’s starter on Saturday evening up against James Kaprielian for the Athletics. Both starters had very similar lines, where Gilbert and Kaprielian both went five innings, allowing two earned runs.
Seattle jumped out to a two-run lead after two sacrifice flies after four. Oakland responded with three of their own in the bottom of the fifth with singles by Nick Allen and Tony Kemp. Seattle’s Eugenio Suarez brought home the tying run on a clutch, eighth inning base hit.
The game went into extras, and Seattle couldn’t push across the ghost runner in the top half of the 10th. In the bottom half, Reliever Diego Castillo intentionally walked Seth Brown, and then unintentionally walked Sean Murphy. Castillo wasn’t able to field a chopped ground ball as Tony Kemp scored the game winning run for Oakland, who took the middle game 4-3.
Seattle’s new ace Luis Castillo proved that he is human and struggled for the first time as a Mariner on Sunday afternoon. He gave up four earned runs over five innings, showing some command issues along the way.
Pinch-hitter Cal Raleigh (2-2, 2 doubles, RBI) and Julio Rodriguez (3-5, RBI, SB) closed Oakland’s lead to one run in the seventh. Seattle had runners on the corner with one out in the eighth when JP Crawford lined out to second and Dylan Moore grounded out to short.
Oakland increased their lead in the bottom half with a double, sacrifice bunt, and triple to make it 5-3 in favor of the A’s. That was the final score as Luis Castillo was tagged with his first loss as a Mariner.
The Washington Nationals (41-82) come to town Tuesday night after a day off for the M’s tomorrow. It will be Robbie Ray vs Erick Fedde in the opener, and George Kirby up against Anibal Sanchez in Wednesday’s midday series finale.
Here is a look at the updated A.L. Wild Card Standings of Sunday evening (prior to BOS-BAL):
- Toronto Blue Jays (65-55), -- GB
- Tampa Bay Rays (65-55), -- GB
- Seattle Mariners (66-56), -- GB
- Minnesota Twins (62-57), 2.5 GB
- Baltimore Orioles (62-58), 3.0 GB
- Chicago White Sox (62-59), 3.5 GB